Long ago, there were two vast oceans, one of roiling and dark, thunderous destruction and one of bright liquid flames containing every color of the rainbow. These two endless seas were called the Void, and the Bifrost. Where the two seas pressed together came bouts of endless steam and bursts of violent light and darkness. From these bursts birthed the Forebearers, deities of untapped potential. Their forms were varied and they all waded the icy flames of the Bifrost, creating the different realms and then populating them with people in their respective images.
At the center of the realms lay midgard, the place where all mortals lived out their first life before going on to live in the realm of their claimed deity, and then guided through again to be reborn on Midgard. Through this, a cycle of worship on midgard was maintained for eons. If this cycle had continued though, it would mean imprisonment.
The gods of the realms were petty and self-centered, turning people into worshippers so devout that they would die on the blade for their deity. This stirred nations and ideologies against each other and through this a faction came offering a solution. This faction, their name lost to history, spat the gods and claimed that while they were powerful beings, they should not be worshipped in such barbaric ways. Though enraged at first that their subjects were not bowing before them and dying for their affection, the god of the realm grew fond of the new worship, their worshippers gave them offerings and made things in their name. With this the gods were pleased.
With the grip of the iron fist of divinity lessened to a guiding hand, this allowed for the mortals to explore and see the world for what they believed it was. Cultures diverged and sprang forth with new abundance. Mortals experimented with science and magic creating wonders of their own. Great cities began to be built, not in the name of deities, but in the name of powerful mortals and necessity of resources.
Over time the mortals began to grow arrogant, and inquisitive. They began to question the divine beings known as the Forbearers, from their necessity and even their existence. This sewed spite into the minds of the gods. This sort of Hubris from their mortal creations would not stand.
The arrogance of the mortals in the face of their creators incited battle. Unbeknownst to them the barbaric devout that had passed so long ago were not given away to their rebirth on Midgard. Instead they were given homes and treated like exalted royalty, but they were still mortal, they were ready for the war that the gods required. Under this new ruling the gods changed the cycle. Those who died in the war in midgard and accepted the gods were treated like kings in the deity’s domain. Those who did not accept them were slaughtered. The very earth wept of blood for decades after this, every swamp and bog were stained red and smelled of rot and Iron. All were slain except a handful of mortals, who the gods left as an example of their forgiveness. The mortals who were left worshipped the gods, rulers over their lives and worship was at the forefront of their existence once again. The gods did not realize what they set into motion.
Over years and lifetimes similar cultures sprouted and from them similar factions, this went on and on until the deity rulers realized that in a relatively short span of time, they were right back to launching another assault on the people of Midgard. The same tactics prevailed, waves of blood lost to the weeping earth, and similar amounts of mortals were left over, to provide worship. This went round and round, over and over, and the new cycle of blood was formed. In an unexpected turn, some of the survivors were warriors from the side of the gods. Either captured or turned to peace. These asylum seekers relished in stories of the realms beyond and the land before. They reminisced of the past and grew sad at the loss they had caused.
The stories were told every cycle, and with each one past more mortals slipped from the fingers of the gods to the side of the mortals on midgard. They would be divided by divinity no longer. The number of mortals swelled until terrifying legions broke the lines of the divine, gaining headway in the war and surviving. This was then that the gods stepped in themselves. They would not be looked down upon by their subject and the traitors they previously held in high regard. Needless to say, nothing could be done against the might of the divine. The deities though, could not seem to manifest long on midgard, always having to retreat, for some reason the longer they stayed, the more power was sapped from their forms.
With every cycle the battles grew longer, the tactics bolder, and again the mortals seemed to almost be in a stalemate against the divine entities themselves. The Forbearers had enough power though, in spite of the boundless mortal tenacity, enough to continue the cycle of blood.
Until, that is, an event that was known as the spark came to pass. On one quiet evening during the height of a cycle, the best minds, craftsmen and strategists all suddenly dropped deep into slumber. When they awoke they assembled and began construction. They all seemed to have the same spark of inspiration, and from that spark grew a flame that ignited a new wave of devotion through Midgard. A devotion to freedom from the tyrannical deities. What these people affected by the spark created was weapons to end all weapons and during the next siege they were able to permanently wound the gods. During the next cycle the gods banished the weapons wrenching them from midgard and throwing them to the ever-hungry void, which happily consumed them, the weapons were never seen again and forgotten over cycles going forward.
The weapons that the mortals had constructed did have an impact on the tide of war, and their efforts were not in vain. The wounds the gods received during the cycle of the spark never closed and began to seemingly poison their divine forms. The Immortals were brought down as cycles continued. Though still very powerful and immortal, the deities seemed to have lost their invulnerability. The tyrant avatar gods could be killed.
As cycles repeated the gods grew weaker as the tenacity of mortals remained present and ever fixated on throwing their tyrannical rulers off their backs. Deities began to fall, be captured, sealed, and some even banished to the void. The number of the divine grew few and the final push was made. During the final push the gods that were backed into a corner had a plan. As the last few members of the group of gods were slain, one of the deities took a mighty relic, forged from the previous devotion of their worshippers and sent it careening into the veil of the Bifrost. The Bifrost began to shatter as realms became untethered and cracked. Some worlds drifted below into the void, being consumed by the unrelenting tide. Other realms were thrust into midgard sending waves of destruction through it. Rainbow flames from the shattered Bifrost coated the world in an inferno and the Void’s tide lapped at the edge of midgard, pulling the last deity and numerous mortal legions down with them.
You find yourself awake on a dock overlooking a vast sea, in a busy port town occupied by the strangest race of people you have ever seen. The last thing you can remember was the war against the gods raging across midgard, and suddenly waves of rainbow fire lashing across the land. No matter who you were in the cycle before, you know that the gods have been defeated, the cycle of blood was broken. Whatever world midgard was now, it is one free from the tyranny of the deities, and you seem to find yourself neck-deep in it. As you get up, you notice strange shards and dust of a rainbow crystal surrounding where your body was just laying. Someone bumps into you, you look at them quickly, and looking back down at the spot, the dust and shard are nowhere to be seen, scattered amongst the worn roads of this strange place.